Rural broadband expansion needs policymakers to clear the way for private enterprise
Still, the R Street Institute’s most recent Broadband Scorecard Report for the states awarded North Carolina a B+ grade. The scorecard ranks states on a broad range of laws concerning broadband deployment, including right-of-way access, zoning to construction permits, franchising, etc. North Carolina scored higher in this scorecard than 30 other states.
R Street’s advice to North Carolina policymakers was that “North Carolina should focus on wireline broadband construction and establish a fee cap for franchises. These steps will help with the deployment of wireline infrastructure to balance out the great work the state has done on wireless.”
As explained by R Street, a “dig once” policy would
require that all broadband providers receive public notice prior to any excavation in public rights of way. This allows multiple providers to access an excavated right of way during a single dig, increasing the efficiency of deployment and minimizing the disruption of traffic flows.